It's no secret lots of freebies are handed out backstage at any awards show. Maui Jim Sunglasses returned to the CMA Awards to give your favorite stars a chance to pick out their favorite pair. We recently chatted with Maui Jim to ask them why stars from Little Big Town to Scotty McCreery have been trying on these cool shades.

Interview With Siobhan Olson of Maui Jim Sunglasses at the CMA Awards

How did Maui Jim Sunglasses end up becoming a popular eye wear for Country Music singers?

There are many country musicians who wear Maui Jim sunglasses (Chris Young, Darius Rucker, Lionel Richie, Glen Campbell, Kenny Loggins, Charles Kelley, Karen Fairchild, Kimperly Schlapman, Scotty McCreery, Natasha Bedingfield, Jennifer Nettles, The Band Perry, Shawna Thompson, Keifer Thompson, etc.). Through our relationships, we participated in the 2011 CMA Awards for the first time. So many people were amazed by the difference in what they saw through our glasses – the world is clearer and much more colorful. We made a lot of new friends. So, we’re back again for 2012.

What’s the number one reason that celebrities wear sunglasses?

People love their Maui Jims because of the superior clarity of the lenses and the fact that our proprietary PolarizedPlus2® lens technology cuts 100 percent of glare and 99.9 percent of UV rays. Maui Jim is the only company that embeds its lenses with three rare earth elements that significantly enhance definition and colors, so everything you see is sharper, more vibrant and colorful.

Musicians who participate in sports find our line of sunglasses to be particularly beneficial because we have different lenses for different light conditions and different sports. For instance, musicians who fish wear Maui Jim because the technology literally lets you see the fish under the water! We have a new ON THE WATER COLLECTION of glasses with features specifically designed for people who boat, fish, surf or paddle.

This year, we’ve brought out many more fashion-forward styles. Did you know we have one of the largest collections of aviators on the market so that everyone can find the right shape for their face? We also have many new styles in the most popular colors this season, like amethyst, olive, mauve, sandstone, midnight blue, lavender, and more. You’ll find some terrific textures like stripes, shell prints and more duo-toned frames.

Have you heard any stories of a singer accidently sitting on or breaking a pair of sunglasses?

We actually have a line of sunglasses called MauiFlex that bend and twist and pop back into shape. They’re perfect for people who are a little hard on their glasses! There are several musicians who wear sunglasses in this line. Gary LaVox with Rascal Flatts  and Jimmy DeMartini with Zac Brown Band wear Guardrails; and Kristian Bush with Sugarland wears Freight Trains. That said, we haven’t had any musicians return their glasses for breakage – yet. However, if they do, we have the best warranty in the eyewear business; and our repair turn-around time is very fast.

Are sunglasses as  important to wear in the winter as wearing them in the summer?

It’s just as important to wear sunglasses in winter, as in summer. Snowy conditions or high altitudes intensify the amount of light and glare. Not to scare you, but one eye condition resulting from unprotected UV exposure is popularly called “snow blindness” (also called radiation keratitis or photokeratitis). This is a burn of the cornea (the clear front surface of the eye) by ultraviolet B rays (UVB). The condition typically occurs at high altitudes on highly reflective snow fields. Symptoms include tearing, pain, redness, swollen eyelids, headache, a gritty feeling in the eyes, halos around lights, hazy vision, and temporary loss of vision.

Maui Jim is one of very few eyewear companies to provide protection from glare and UV rays from above, below and behind each lens. We also make lenses that are good for winter sports, like skiing or snowboarding, because the lenses are light and durable and many of our frame styles provide superior wrap-around coverage.

If I want to buy the same glasses as worn by my favorite singer, can you recommend their preferred style?

After this year’s CMA Awards, you will be able to visit our Facebook page; and there will be a photo album of country musicians in their Maui Jims. We’ll tell you about the style they’re wearing so that you can visit our website at Maui or a sunglasses retailer near you. Or you can find photos on Pinterest @MauiJim or tweet us at @OfficialMauiJim or send us an email via customer service at


Courtesy of Maui Jim